Thanks to a ma­jor over­haul, a tired fam­ily hol­i­day home in Plett is now set to make more happy mem­o­ries

South African Garden and Home - - Contents -

A dated Plett hol­i­day home gets a new lease on life

Af­ter 20 years of hol­i­day­ing in this house, the own­ers, who have a large ex­tended fam­ily, de­cided it was time to mod­ernise. The house had hosted many happy fam­ily hol­i­days, but was now show­ing signs of wear and, as their life­styles had changed and their chil­dren had left home and had fam­i­lies of their own, the lay­out no longer worked for them.

In June 2016 they called in ar­chi­tect Tickey Klawan­sky and Meg Fasanelli of Meg Vaun In­te­ri­ors (who had dec­o­rated their Jo’burg home) and to­gether they came up with a plan to bring the house up to date. The ar­chi­tect’s aim was to sim­plify and min­imise the de­tails and


Stack­ing glass doors that open up com­pletely make the din­ing area feel like a cov­ered pa­tio. The prac­ti­cal wood-look tiles from Italtile blend with the deck.

Rus­tic doors from Amat­uli in­vite you into the stream­lined court­yard. A large new door gives a glimpse of the ocean view.

stream­line the fin­ishes. Arches were squared off in the be­d­rooms, shadow lines re­placed the tra­di­tional cor­nic­ing through­out and in­stead of cur­tains, shut­ters were in­stalled on the win­dows that re­quired pri­vacy.

Strangely enough, for a house with an amaz­ing out­look, the liv­ing area faced in­wards, away from the view. A ma­jor part of the new de­sign was to open up the tra­di­tional se­ries of rooms and cre­ate one large liv­ing, din­ing and cook­ing space with huge win­dows and doors so that wher­ever you are, you can ap­pre­ci­ate the beauty of the set­ting.

The en­trance to the court­yard was fit­ted with rus­tic doors from Amat­uli and through these, a large win­dow now draws the eye through the liv­ing room to the pool deck and ocean be­yond.

“We love the idea that you ex­pe­ri­ence the view from the front door and it gets bet­ter as you pro­ceed through the house,” say the own­ers.

Walls be­tween the var­i­ous rooms were re­moved and the rooms gut­ted. Even the tra­di­tional fire­place was re­placed with a free­stand­ing wood-burn­ing stove. But the big­gest dif­fer­ence came with the in­stal­la­tion of big­ger win­dows and frame­less glass slid­ing doors, which link the house to the pool deck.

“One of the most ef­fec­tive changes was rais­ing the pool,” ex­plains Meg Fasanelli. “Pre­vi­ously, there was a small pool on a lower level ac­cessed by a set of steps. By in­stalling a new pool on the same level as the house and sur­round­ing it with deck­ing, it now be­comes an ex­ten­sion of the liv­ing ar­eas. We fur­ther em­pha­sised this con­nec­tion by lay­ing sim­i­lar wood-look tiles through­out the liv­ing rooms.”

As the own­ers love to cook, the kitchen was de­signed ac­cord­ingly. “Be­cause the fam­ily tends to so­cialise here, we made the is­land over three me­tres long and fit­ted it with a prep bowl, an in­stant hot wa­ter tap and popup plugs so that it works for more than one cook,” ex­plains Meg. “We kept the cab­i­nets neu­tral and in­te­grated the ap­pli­ances so the kitchen forms a sub­tle back­drop to the liv­ing ar­eas.”

Part of the stream­lin­ing process in­volved in­cor­po­rat­ing an ex­te­rior stair­case into the house and adding an­other bath­room. This meant that the house went from hav­ing four be­d­rooms to hav­ing three. How­ever, all are now en suite and large enough for daybeds that can also be used for sleep­ing.

In ad­di­tion, the ex­ist­ing bath­rooms un­der­went much-needed re­ju­ve­na­tion. “To sim­plify things, we used the same pale blue mo­saic tile in all the bath­rooms to high­light cer­tain walls.

We in­stalled a free­stand­ing bath in the main bath­room, but in the oth­ers, we built them in and clad them with Cae­sar­stone, which, be­cause there are no grout lines, has a very clean ef­fect,” says Meg.

As the fur­nish­ings needed re­plac­ing, Meg de­signed new pieces, which were cus­tom made for the dif­fer­ent rooms. “We sourced all the fur­ni­ture and ac­ces­sories in Jo’burg, even the kitchen cab­i­nets, and then trans­ported ev­ery­thing down here,” she ex­plains.

“We wanted a light, fresh hol­i­day feel so we chose prac­ti­cal neu­trals for the large pieces like the so­fas and in­tro­duced colour through the scat­ter cush­ions. We also kept it sim­ple in the be­d­rooms, up­hol­ster­ing the head­boards in vi­brant fab­rics and us­ing the same white li­nen and quilts in all the rooms,” ex­plains Meg. “You don’t want to have to fuss with fur­nish­ings when you’re on hol­i­day.”

The ren­o­va­tions took around 18 months to com­plete, but the own­ers are thrilled with the re­sults. “The new pool and its prox­im­ity to the house has given us so much more liv­ing space where we can sit out­doors and en­joy the sun­shine and the views,” say the own­ers who are look­ing for­ward to spend­ing their first sum­mer hol­i­day here.


THIS PAGE, FROM TOP: The TV room is an ex­ten­sion of the liv­ing ar­eas but can be closed off with metal-framed glass doors that slide into the wall. The built-in unit was cus­tom made.

THIS SPREAD, CLOCK­WISE FROM ABOVE: As the old pool was on a lower level, it was filled in and a new pool built on the same level as the liv­ing ar­eas. The fur­ni­ture is from Plaisir du Jardin. In the main en suite bath­room, the owner wanted a shower seat so, for vis­ual con­ti­nu­ity, Meg ex­tended this un­der the van­ity with stor­age space in­side. There’s more stor­age be­hind the mir­rors. For all the be­d­rooms in­clud­ing the main one, Meg de­signed dou­ble head­boards that ex­tend on ei­ther side. “This way, you can use two sin­gle beds with a bed­side ta­ble in the mid­dle if you pre­fer.” The head­board in the guest room is cov­ered in Du­ralee fab­ric from Halo­gen In­ter­na­tional.


THIS PAGE, CLOCK­WISE FROM TOP: To sim­plify the ren­o­va­tions, the same aqua mo­saic tile was used in all thebath­rooms. The bath was clad with Cae­sar­stone, which was also used for the van­ity shelf ex­tend­ing over the bath. The taps and shower fit­tings are by Hans­grohe. Although the house lost a bed­room in the ren­o­va­tion, the re­main­ing ones, like this guestroom, are large enough to ac­com­mo­date a daybed, which can be used for re­lax­ing or as an ex­tra bed. In the be­d­rooms, the dress­ing ta­bles can dou­ble as com­puter desks.

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